Will 2014 be the year when scrappy new challengers take on the might of Android and iOS? Never say never, but the challenge won’t come from Tizen nor Ubuntu Touch.
Japanese carrier NTT DoCoMo has indefinitely suspended its plans for a Tizen phone launch this year, and Ubuntu backer Canonical has admitted that there’s unlikely to be any Ubuntu handset coming from a major manufacturer or carrier this year.
Tizen train stalls
Tizen began life in 2011 as an evolution of two other Linux-based OSs that never lived up to the hype, Intel and Nokia’s MeeGo, and LiMo, which you will have never encountered if you don’t live in Japan. Samsung hopped aboard the Tizen train in early 2012, merging in its own, regionally successful, low-end platform, Bada.
Samsung remains Tizen’s biggest proponent, having revealed in November that it’s using the lightweight OS to power the NX300M smart camera. However, at the time it also said that plans for a Tizen phone launch had been pushed back to 2014.
And now DoCoMo has pulled out – for now. The company said early Friday that there wasn’t enough growth in the Japanese smartphone market to provide space for a new OS. This...